45,000 students and 8,000 employees in teaching, research and administration, all working together to shape perspectives for the future – that is the University of Münster (WWU). Embedded in the vibrant atmosphere of Münster with its high standard of living, the University’s diverse research profile and attractive study programmes draw students and researchers from throughout Germany and around the world.

The Department of Behavioural Biology in the Faculty of Biology at the University of Münster, Germany, is seeking to fill the position of a


Doctoral Research Associate
Wissenschaftliche*r Mitarbeiter*in
(salary level TV-L E 13, 65%)


For the DFG-funded project “From crisis to opportunity: Linking research on animal personality and reproducibility” commencing on 1 May 2024. We are offering a part-time position (65% FTE) for 3 years (corresponding to the project’s duration).


Your tasks
We are seeking a highly motivated candidate interested in behavioural biology, the methodological refinement of animal experimentation, experimental design and data analysis. Using mice as a model species, the aim of the PhD project is to develop and validate practicable and effective strategies that may serve to improve the reproducibility of research findings from animal experiments. In particular, the PhD candidate will investigate whether the systematic consideration of personality types in the study design controls for within-experiment variation and, this way, contributes to better reproducibility of the outcome. The PhD candidate will be involved in all stages of the scientific method, including the experimental design, project coordination, data collection and analysis, and delivery of results to the research community. This position is tied to working towards a doctoral qualification.


Our expectations

  • A graduate degree (MSc or an equivalent degree in biology, the life sciences, biomedicine, neuroscience, biosciences, animal sciences or biostatistics) is required.
  • A strong interest or expertise in experimental design and/or data analysis is advantageous.
  • Experience and interest in behavioural biology and animal welfare science are advantageous.
  • Further training in laboratory animal science is desirable.
  • Programming skills are a plus.
  • Good organizational, writing and presentation skills, as well as the ability to work well both independently and in a team environment, are advantageous.
  • Very good knowledge of spoken and written English is mandatory.
  • German language skills would be advantageous but are not a requirement.


Research environment
The Department of Behavioural Biology at the University of Münster offers a mind-stimulating and interdisciplinary research environment. Current research projects deal with e.g. (1) stress, stress avoidance and animal welfare, (2) the role of inter-individual differences for welfare questions, and (3) the behavioural ecology of optimism/pessimism. The PhD student will be embedded in a graduate program.

The University of Münster strongly supports equal opportunity and diversity. We welcome all applicants regardless of sex, nationality, ethnic or social background, religion or worldview, disability, age, sexual orientation or gender identity. We are committed to creating family-friendly working conditions.

We actively encourage applications by women. Women with equivalent qualifications and academic achievements will be preferentially considered unless these are outweighed by reasons which necessitate the selection of another candidate.

If you have any questions, please contact Prof Helene Richter ( / +49 (0)251 8321014).

Are you interested? Then we look forward to receiving your application.

Applications may be written in German or English, and should include a cover letter, CV, list of publications  (if any), degree certificates and the names of two referees. Applications should be received by 15 November  2023 by e-mail (all documents merged into one PDF file) at:

University of Münster
Department of Behavioural Biology
Prof Helene Richter
Badestraße 13, 48149 Münster, Germany

Email: /
Phone: +49(0)251 8321014